Jan 2010


The Sodiswater Project has improved the lives of many rural communities who do not have access to clean running water. Using a free and easy method of disinfecting their drinking water through sun power, they have reduced diseases caused by unsafe water...

Helping others lead safe and healthy lives is the driving force behind a six-month journey by Liani Broodryk and Maria Botha. They are from the 'Ripples for Good' team and are travelling through South Africa to show communities how to disinfect their drinking water.

They visit deep rural areas where there is no running water and where communities have to use water from the nearest river or stream for drinking. This water is polluted and can spread bacteria, which cause diseases like diarrhoea and cholera.

The team uses transport like motorbikes, bicycles, canoes and donkey carts to reach their destinations. Sometimes they even have to walk.

Health benefits

The project, known as the Sodis-water Project, show communities how to disinfect their drinking water through solar disinfection. This means they make use of the sun's rays through a simple process. The method was developed by a microbiologist at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and has been approved by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

The process costs nothing and has huge health benefits as it helps to prevent diarrhoea, infections and other diseases carried by polluted water.

Reduce diseases

Many communities throughout the country have used the Sodiswater method successfully. Studies have proven that it has helped to reduce diseases in these communities. Fewer children, for example, were affected or died from diarrhoea, which is most often caused by drinking contaminated water.

Communities which have benefited from the Sodiswater method are encouraged to show their neighbours how to use it in their own communities. With a little effort they can prevent disease and save lives.

How to use the Sodiswater method

To use this method, all you need is the sun's rays and a transparent container like a plastic or glass bottle or bucket. Then just follow these simple steps:

  • Fill your container with water.
  • Close the container and leave it in direct sunlight for six hours.
  • The ultra violet (UV) rays of the sun will kill disease-causing bacteria in the water.
  • Once the water has settled, it is safe to use for drinking.

- Samona Murugan

  • Bacteria - cells that contain germs and can spread disease in your body
  • Solar - relating to using energy from the sun's rays
  • Ultra violet rays - Invisible energy in the form of rays given off by the sun
For more information, call 012 841-3477
Rural development
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